Encyclopedia of Sport: Every sport from around the world
Topend Sports Logo

Jeu Provençal

Jeu Provençal is one of the more popular French form of Boules, also called Boule Lyonnaise, where the objective is to throw a set of hollow metal balls as close as possible to a target ball, referred to as a jack. The sport can be played individually or in teams. The game developed during the 18th century around the area of Lyon.

The field used  is 27.5 meters long and 2.5 to 4 meters wide, relatively large compared to other forms of Boules (it is twice the size of a pétanque court). The balls used are usually made of bronze, and vary in size and weight based on a player's comfort.  The jack is made of wood and is smaller than the balls used for playing.

Jeu ProvençalProvencal game on the island of Barthelasse, in Avignon, at the beginning of the 20th century

A match begins with a coin toss, and the team that wins the toss starts by throwing the jack into the playing area. The jack has to land at least 12.5 meters away from a player. Each team or individual is handed four playing balls that has to be thrown closer to the jack. Teams takes turns to throw the balls, until both teams run out of all the balls.

One point is awarded for each ball a team has closer to the target, ahead of the closest ball of the other team. If the closest ball of both teams are at an equal distance, then neither team gets a point for the round. The team that reaches 13 points first is declared as the winner.

Similar Sports

Related Pages

send us a comment Any comments, suggestions, or corrections? Please let us know.

Sport Extra

Check out the 800+ sports in the Encyclopedia of Every Sport. Well not every sport, as there is a list of unusual sports, extinct sports and newly created sports. How to get on these lists? See What is a sport? We also have sports winners lists, and about major sports events and a summary of every year.